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This U.S. commonwealth territory is an ideal destination for Americans who want to escape the mainland without the hassle of using a passport or converting their currency. Of course, Puerto Rico is also a wonderful playground for people the world round who enjoy water sports, tropical temperatures, and cuisine with flavor. From the brilliant architecture to the stunning bioluminescent bays, Puerto Rico has plenty to offer all types of travelers.
The island of Puerto Rico has a diverse array of activities, so it’s as appealing to the avid sailor as it is to a through-and-through landlubber. Whether you want to spend your afternoons lazily walking cobblestone streets and eating tapas or kayaking off the coast, you can find a region on the island that suits you perfectly. Puerto Rico activities are found in a number of regions, from San Juan, the capital city on the northern coast to the center of the island.
San Juan — The capital city of Puerto Rico is more than just the hub of the island by title. It is also where you will find important landmarks, nightlife, and streets alive with music and the aroma of local food. Indeed, some of the best things to do in Puerto Rico are found in San Juan: try your hand at ziplining , rock climbing, or paddleboarding while you’re in the area.
Central — The central region of Puerto Rico is an ideal stop for outdoor adventurers. It is in this part of the island that you will find mountains ripe for hiking and scaling. Other attractions here include Dos Bocas Lake and Toro Verde Adventure Park.
Northern Coast — If you dare to explore beyond San Juan in northern Puerto Rico, you will be rewarded. The golf capital of the country, Dorado, is in this region, along with the Camuy Caves.
Southern Coast — The southern region of the island is known as the “Gateway to the Caribbean,” and it’s certainly one of the finest parts of Puerto Rico. Excursions here include walking tours of Ponce and hiking trips in the Guánica Dry Forest.
Before you head to the coast with a paddle in hand, make sure you set aside time to see some of the cultural attractions on the island. Tourist attractions in Puerto Rico include such meaningful sites as Castillo Serrallés and San Juan Bautista Cathedral, which is one of the oldest cathedrals in this part of the world. Don’t forget to grab your camera and head to Old San Juan, where the Spanish influence is clear in the local architecture. Once you’ve captured some postcard-perfect images, check out the work of other creative people at places such as the Museum of Contemporary Art and National Gallery.
If you consider yourself an adventurer, prepare to come back to Puerto Rico time and time again. There are simply too many once-in-a-lifetime opportunities here to complete your bucket list in one trip. One of the most unique experiences to be had in Puerto Rico is a kayak tour in one of its biobays. Thanks to the dinoflagellates in the water, at night these bays glow neon green when the water is stirred. Mosquito Bay on Vieques Island is the most impressive of the biobays, so it should certainly be on your itinerary. Of course, Puerto Rico tours also include full days of snorkeling and sailing parasailing over cities like Arecido. Adventures in Puerto Rico can even take you subterranean: Check out the caving tours to really get your adrenaline pumping.